Published on August 2nd, 2022 | by Adrian Gunning
Roald Dahl’s Fantastic Mr Fox finally burrows into Melbourne these September school holidays
After numerous reschedules as a result of the pandemic, Roald Dahl’s much-loved Fantastic Mr Fox leaps off the page and onto the Playhouse stage at Arts Centre Melbourne from 20 – 24 September in a “jaw-droppingly”, visually-spectacular, critically-acclaimed production for the whole family.
shake & stir theatre co, the Brisbane based company behind the award-winning, sold out national tours of Dahl’s The Twits, George’s Marvellous Medicine and multi Helpmann Award® nominated Revolving Rhymes & Dirty Beasts, heads to Melbourne with this tall tale perfect for all ages to enjoy.
Published in 1970, Dahl’s hilarious wit remains on full display today in Fantastic Mr Fox, an action-thriller-suspense-comedy overflowing with cunning plans, explosions and chases, not to mention mischief, mayhem and humongous belly laughs.
Mr Fox lives in the wood, under a hole, under a huge tree with Mrs Fox and their small Fox family. Every night, Mr Fox leaves the hole to steal food from three horrible farmers – Boggis, Bunce and Bean – one fat, one short, one lean.
The three greedy farmers concoct a plan to catch Mr Fox, but no-one outfoxes a fox. When Mr Fox needs to save his family and friends, he’ll go to any length – above or underground – to outwit the mean humans.
“The story has all the trademark grit, wit and grotesque deliciousness we have come to expect from Dahl,” said shake & stir theatre co’s Artistic Director Ross Balbuziente. “It features three of his most hilarious meanies – Boggis, Bunce and Bean. At the same time, the beating heart of the story is the importance of friendship and family and the reminder that when we work together, anything can be accomplished,” he continued.
Balbuziente is excited to direct another Dahl favourite, a story he himself has read countless times.
“This is epic theatre for young people – actors interacting with full-stage animation on a huge 12-metre-tall set that houses a big bag of theatrical tricks. It’s thrilling, cutting-edge theatre for young and old alike,” said Balbuziente.
With impressive set and costume (Josh McIntosh), lighting (Jason Glenwright), composition and sound (Guy Webster) and video design (Craig Wilkinson), Fantastic Mr Fox has been revered as a visual and aural feast that transports audiences deep underground and back to the earth’s crust in time for dinner.
shake & stir theatre co’s Roald Dahl productions have been seen by over 200,000 people across Australia and New Zealand and have played sold out seasons at the Sydney Opera House, Arts Centre Melbourne, QPAC, Canberra Theatre Centre and Heath Ledger Theatre Perth to name a few.
You’ve read the book, seen the movie – now experience the eye-popping stage adaptation from the wacky mind of the world’s number one storyteller these school holidays.
“If you had to give it marks out of 10 – this one’s an 11. Make sure you grab the kids and see it.” – The Courier Mail
“Jaw-droppingly brilliant… theatre-making at the top level.” – Stage Whispers
Arts Centre Melbourne, shake & stir theatre co and QPAC present Fantastic Mr Fox
Playhouse | 20 – 24 September
Age Recommendation: 5 – 105!
Duration: 55 minutes (no interval)
Warnings: loud music, haze, smoke and strobe-like effects
Tickets from artscentremelbourne.com.au